In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, Mutts Happening would like to celebrate some of the dogs of Irish heritage.
The Irish wolfhound is the national dog of Ireland. As its name indicates, it was bred to hunt wolves. Later, wolfhounds were trained for search and rescue. Wolfhound puppies often weigh about 90 pounds at only six months. (That’s a lot of corned beef.) They’re friendly, bark little and aren’t the best watchdogs. But their size is enough to scare intruders away.
Kerry blue terriers are the official dogs of Kerry, in southwest Ireland. Kerrys have been hunters, herders, police dogs, and personal watchdogs. But the best thing about a Kerry blue is, that no matter how old it gets, it’s always a puppy at heart.
Closely related to the Kerry Blue terrier is the Wheaten terrier. While Irish nobility owned the larger sporting dogs, the Wheaten was often called “the poor man’s dog” and worked on the farm, herding and protecting. These good-natured and fun-loving dogs were brought to America in the 1940’s, and were officially recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1978,
Now as far as human festivities go, Irish dog or not, if you are planning on bringing your dog to a parade, first check with your town or the parade organizers. Not all four-legged marchers are welcome. Many don’t like crowds. And Penelope, for example, bolts at the sound of a drum.
Also, it’s not a good idea to dye your dog green. Dogs lick their fur and you wouldn’t want your pet to get sick. But you can “decorate” your dog (if he doesn’t get too embarrassed) with St. Patrick’s Day accessories, like sweaters, shirts, collars, or this leprechaun hat. (Yes! It’s for dogs!)
And your dog probably would love celebrating with soda bread, corned beef, or a bowl of Irish stew.